Teenage pregnancies in France: what has changed in the last twenty years?

Population and Societies

361, October 2000

  • A decline in the total number of teenage pregnancies
  • A sharp drop, followed by stagnation, in the teenage pregnancy rate
  • The increasing frequency of abortion...
  • ... does not call into question the effectiveness of contraception
  • Why aren’t teenage pregnancies declining more ?


Twenty-five years after the Veil law legalizing abortion was passed on January 17, 1975, abortion is once again an important subject of debate in France. Several modifications to the law are presently under consideration, in particular a possible extension of the legal gestational age limit (from 10 to 12 weeks of pregnancy), and the softening of parental authorization requirements for minors. Has the incidence of pregnancies and abortions among under-age teenagers varied over the past twenty years? For what reasons?

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